Latest 15 Oct 2012

World no.4 Agnieszka Radwanska to headline next year’s ASB Classic

World no.4 Agnieszka Radwanska to headline next year’s ASB Classic

In only the second time in the history of the ASB Classic, a player in the world’s top five will grace the courts in Auckland.

Poland’s Agnieszka Radwanska is currently no.4 in the world after a stunning season where she reached her first Grand Slam final at Wimbledon and collected three WTA titles.

Following in the footsteps of other big names who have come to Auckland such as Maria Sharapova, Anna Kournikova and Lindsay Davenport, Radwanska comes at the peak of her career to date.

The previously highest ranked women to play in the ASB Classic were 2009 winner Elena Dementieva (also ranked no.4 in the world) and Nadia Petrova in 2006 at no.7.

New ASB Classic Tournament Director Karl Budge says he is thrilled to secure a player of Radwanska’s quality who is in the best form of her career.

“Agnieszka started the year at no.8 in the world and by June she’d won three more titles in Dubai, Miami and Brussels, reached the final of Wimbledon and jumped to no.2 in the world. That’s a pretty impressive six months.”

Introduced to tennis by her father Robert at the age of four, Radwanska has accumulated a total of $US10 million in prize money. The 23-year-old has 10 career titles, has been in the top 10 since 2008, and as a junior she won both Wimbledon and the French Open.

Radwanska also has a younger sister, Urszula, on the professional tennis circuit, who has just entered the top 30.

As well as Radwanska’s obvious ability on the court, Budge says tennis fans can look forward to having some fun with one of the most popular players on the tour – with the “bubbly” Radwanska winning the WTA fan favourite award last year.

ASB Executive General Manager Culture and Community Linley Wood says as principal sponsor of the ASB Classic they are delighted to have helped secure the equal highest ranked player to ever feature in the tournament.

“Radwanska’s entry in the ASB Classic continues the tournament’s long history of attracting global stars of women's tennis.”

“Next January’s ASB Classic, our 17th as principal sponsor, will be a fantastic opportunity for Kiwi tennis fans to enjoy the most in-form women’s player to hit our courts.”

The 2013 ASB Classic runs from 31 December this year to 5 January 2013. Tickets go on sale from Ticketek on Thursday, 1 November. 

The start time for each day’s play has been moved an hour earlier to midday. All centre court games for the ASB Classic will also be screened live on SKY TV.